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Google Wants to Improve the Quality of Life in Cities


With all the information that Google generates, why does it not promote projects for the common good?

How many searches in Google have you carried out today? The answer, irrespective of the quantity, is proof of the relevance that that company has in our times. Searches that, of course, throw up information. Who searches for what? How many people are searching for the same thing at the same time? And why?

With this data within our reach, it would appear logical that the California-based firm would seek to develop projects that transcend the digital environment to influence people’s lives in other ways. Such is the case of Sidewalk Labs, an initiative that seeks to develop and incubate urban technologies to address issues like the cost of living, efficient transportation and energy usage, according to Google CEO Larry Page.

Daniel L. Doctoroff, a former colleague of Michael R. Bloomberg in the New York City government, is heading the project, and which aims to link Google’s innovative spirit to the most pressing needs a city always has. The specific role of Sidewalk Labs will be to develop platforms that allow people to “connect” in order to, by themselves, manage energy use or modify their transportation habits.

What can digital information be transformed into? Perhaps it is already evident that it does not only live behind a screen but has an increasing influence in other spheres, by overflowing and having more and more of an effect on our physical reality.

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